San Francisco

World Champion Cyclist Fatally Struck in San Francisco's Presidio

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A world champion cyclist was struck and killed by the driver of a vehicle in San Francisco's Presidio earlier this week.

Ethan Boyes, a reigning Masters Track world champion, died in the collision reported around 4 p.m. Tuesday.

U.S. Park Police responded to Arguello Boulevard south of Washington Street for a report of a collision between a vehicle and bicyclist. The bicyclist, later identified as Boyes, died at a hospital while the vehicle's driver was also hospitalized but is expected to survive.

No other details about the collision were immediately available from U.S. Park Police as of Friday afternoon.

USA Cycling on Friday issued a statement mourning the death of Boyes, who was the current world champion in the Masters Track Men's 40-44 Time Trial and Sprint events held last fall. He was a 10-time national champion during his career and still holds a world record for men ages 35-39 in the 1,000-meter time trial event.

"Beyond Ethan's athletic achievements, he was an upstanding member of the American track cycling community," USA Cycling said in the statement. "His loss will be felt at local, regional, national, and world events for years, as he brought a mixture of competition and friendliness to every race. Our thoughts are with his family and loved ones."

The San Francisco Bicycle Coalition also issued a statement Friday about the collision, saying several eyewitness accounts indicate that Boyes was riding his bike south on Arguello Boulevard when a northbound vehicle hit him after the driver swerved across the center line and into the bike lane.

The bicycle coalition said that because the collision happened on federal property, "We are reaching out to the Presidio's governing body to demand that immediate action be taken to protect the many people who ride bicycles in the park, including on this stretch of Arguello."

“He is a beacon of light, he clearly has lots of friends and family members who love him. He was an active member of the cycling community,” said Janelle Wong, executive director of the San Francisco Bicycle Coalition.

She did not know Boyes personally, but says many people in the community did.  Boyce marks the first cycling death in San Francisco this year.   

The city has set a goal of zero traffic deaths by 2024, but Wong says with 37 traffic deaths reported last year, more will need to be done to reach that goal. 

“We really need the city to recommit and do the hard work with us to make our streets safer for the most vulnerable users,” said Wong.

San Francisco Supervisor Connie Chan, who represents the neighborhood where the collision occurred, also issued a statement about the tragedy.

"My heart goes out to Mr. Boyes' family and loved ones," Chan said. "No one should suffer or die from traffic violence."

Chan said she is urging the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency "to explore the possibility of protective bike lanes on Arguello between Geary and the entrance to the Presidio."

The driver involved in the crash was transported to the hospital with non life-threatening injuries. United States Park Police and the U.S. attorney's office are investigating, but have not released a cause for the crash.

Because streets in the presidio are on federal land, Wong said the coalition is demanding immediate action by the federal government to better protect cyclists. 

“We want to continue to do this advocacy work and continue to work to make our streets safer here in San Francisco,” said Wong. “In honor of him and for all families that have suffered.” 

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